As you all may be aware, I am not single. As a matter of fact, I haven’t been single for almost half of my life. I met my husband when we were about 13, we started dating when we were 16 and now we’re 28 and married. I have, however, watched as friends and family have navigated the world of dating and I’ve seen the scars it leaves behind.
The Dating Game
Today, the game is played mainly on electronic devices. Of course, blind dates are still a thing and everyone has at least one friend who is trying to set them up with someone at some point, but for the most part people find each other on dating websites and apps, like Match or Plenty of Fish or Tinder.
This isn’t always a bad thing; I have two friends who have found great partners from one of those apps. However, from what I’ve seen, for every Prince there are a thousand frogs. This is such a big deal that there are even Instagram accounts dedicated to horrible matches on dating apps.
My co-worker gave me permission to use a couple of screenshots from the “Princes” she’s come across on sites like Match and apps like Tinder. Here are the tame ones:
Others asked her right off the bat if she ever has sex in her cosplay costumes, to which she said no and to which he replied she shouldn’t get her “costume panties in a bunch”. Another told her what he would do to her “assss” for her. These are all initial contact statements, too, by the way. It’s like, “Hi, I’m so-and-so and I wanna screw.”
Now, I know that there are some apps in which this is appropriate because they are literally just “hook up” apps. However, this happens at Match and PoF, too. It happens all over. People feel comfortable saying or doing things behind a screen that they may not otherwise, leading to idiocy like that above.
The Problem With Dating
Honestly, I don’t know if I’m the person who is best suited to address this, seeing as how I haven’t been single in 12 years and wouldn’t know where to begin if I became single anytime soon. However, I’m going to give it my best shot:
The issue here seems to be that these sites and apps are horrible for finding a good partner, but most people don’t have the time to meet anyone outside of work and home and beyond that there aren’t many other options.
Meeting someone at church is risky, because their faith could be more or less a part of life for them than it is for you, leading one of you to either question their beliefs or attempt to force the other to conform.
Meeting someone at a bar is also risky, especially for women, because there’s the chance you’ll be drugged and worse, or you’ll just meet someone looking for a one-night stand.
I had it so easy, meeting my husband in school. Once you reach adulthood, building new relationships of any kind becomes so much more difficult. Most relationships are built over time and after frequent communication. This is fine when it comes to co-workers becoming friends, but no one wants to date a co-worker because we all know how that turns out.
Although I am not single, I do know a little about human nature. So, here’s my advice for those who are single and are struggling with it:
First, take the time to know yourself through and through, and ensure that your happiness depends on you and you alone. I understand that loneliness is a horrible feeling, but if you’re trying to find a partner to validate yourself in some way, you’re going to be disappointed. Only after you truly see yourself in a good light can you find a healthy balance between being wanted and desired and being validated.
Secondly, I know that looks mean a lot when first starting out, but don’t make that your deal-breaker. We all want someone beautiful, but beauty really is only part of it. Some of the most beautiful people are the most insecure and they will take you down to build themselves up. Plus, beauty really does fade. So if you meet someone and they aren’t an 11/10, don’t write them off completely just for that reason. Similarly, if they are an 11/10, don’t ignore all of their flaws just because you’ve got you some arm candy.
Last, but not least, don’t settle just because you’re tired of being single. I believe that love is real and that it occurs for different people at different times. Just because you’re pushing 30 and haven’t found “the one” doesn’t mean shit, so don’t let people talk you into rushing into something you aren’t sure about. You probably have friends and family members in relationships asking when you’re going to find someone, when you’re going to get married, etc. but they can all kiss your ass, to be honest. At the end of the day it’s your life and you’re the one who has to live it. Don’t settle just to appease society. Wait, find out who you are and be patient. Life has a way of working itself out.